Have you been craving a whole new brand of donut? BFFFers, we’ve got just the thing for you— and we promise you’re not dreaming. This maple bacon cronut recipe really is as delicious as it looks, and it’s totally doable. With some time and effort, you can make your own fluffy kronuts (aka cronuts) to enjoy. As you cover them with sweet glaze and sprinkle on maple bacon bits, you’ll wonder how you’ve gone all this time without them!
— (1 packet) active dry yeast
—¼ cup warm water
—¼ cup warm whole milk
—1 cup all-purpose flour
—1 cup bread flour
—¾ cup unsalted diced cold butter (1 ½ sticks)
—3 tablespoons granulated sugar
—½ teaspoon salt
—4 egg yolks
—2 cups whole milk
—½ cup granulated sugar
—2 teaspoons vanilla
—½ teaspoon salt
—6 tablespoons corn starch
—8 slices bacon
—4 tablespoons sugar
—2 tablespoons water
—1/2 egg white
—1/4 teaspoon black pepper
—¼ teaspoon cayenne
—1 cup powdered sugar
—¼ cup maple syrup
—1 teaspoon vanilla
1. In a small bowl, mix the warm water with the warm milk. Stir in yeast.
2. In a separate bowl, sift the all-purpose and bread flour. Mix in diced cold butter with your hands until the flour forms crumbles. Leave pieces of cold butter to make the dough flaky and light. (If you don’t want to use your hands, use a food processor. Pulse a few times to combine the ingredients.
3. Add in the sugar and salt. Stir to combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix with a spatula to combine. Mix just enough to combine and form the dough into a ball with your hands. Don’t mix too much— you want to keep the pieces of butter intact in the dough.
5. Wrap the dough ball in plastic and set in the fridge to chill for 2 hours. This will re-solidify the butter and allow the gluten to relax a bit.
6. After the dough has chilled in the fridge, take it out to roll and fold.
7. With a rolling pin, roll out the dough so it is longer than it is wide. Fold it in thirds, like you would do to a business letter. Turn it 90 degrees, roll it back out, and fold again. Do this a total of 4 times. Re-wrap in plastic and set in the refrigerator overnight.
8. After the dough chills overnight, it will rise to about double its size.
1. In a medium pot, combine milk and ¼ cup sugar, and heat over medium heat.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks and other ¼ cup sugar until combined and fluffy. Whisk in the vanilla and salt. Then whisk in the corn starch one tablespoon at a time until smooth and combined.
3. While continuing to whisk, add in one cup of the heated milk mixture, a few tablespoons at a time. You must slowly incorporate the heated milk mixture so that the eggs do not cook. Slowly add the egg mixture to the milk mixture and stir to combine. Heat until it boils, then turn the heat off.
4. Transfer it to the bowl covered in plastic and refrigerate for 3-4 hours or overnight.
1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Cook the bacon in a skillet and set aside to cool. Once it has cooled coarsely, chop it into pieces.
2. In a pot, dissolve the sugar and water over medium heat. Once the sugar has dissolved, toss the chopped bacon into the syrup. Stir to combine, then remove the bacon and set on a paper towel to remove excess sugar.
3. Beat the egg white in a bowl until it’s fluffy and foamy. Add the cayenne, black pepper, and chopped and coated bacon.
4. Spread the bacon on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes.
5. Once the bacon is removed and cooled, finely chop.
FRYING AND FINISHING THE CRONUTS
1. In a heavy bottom pan, heat about 2-2 1/2 inches of good frying oil to about 330-350 degrees F. (Canola, safflower, sunflower, or peanut oils work best.) Use your thermometer to carefully monitor the temperature. If it’s too hot, the donuts will burn, and if it’s too cold, they’ll get greasy.
2. Roll out the dough that has been refrigerated overnight until it’s about ½ – ¾ inches thick.
3. Using two different size cookie cutters or biscuit cutters (or glasses, if you so desire), cut out donut shapes with a hole in the middle.
4. One at a time, fry on each side for 1 2- minutes until they puff up and turn golden brown. Watch this process very closely.
5. When finished frying, place on a plate lined with a paper towel. Repeat the same process for the donut holes.
Preparing the Maple Syrup Glaze While the Cronuts are Cooling
1. In a medium bowl, combine the powdered sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla. Stir to combine.
2. You can adjust your glaze depending on how thick or thin you want it. To thicken it, add more sugar. To thin it out, add more syrup. Try using water to limit sweetness.
FINISHING THE CRONUT
1. Fill the pastry cream in a bottle, a zip lock bag, or a pastry bag with a small tip. On the top side, inject the donuts with the pastry cream in around 6 different spots.
2. Cover with the maple syrup glaze and top it with the bacon crumble.
3. Added bonus: pipe some yummy cream into a cronut hole and enjoy those while you finish the rest.
4. Enjoy all the hard work you accomplished with your little bit of heaven!
What’s your favorite cronut creation?
Recipe and Photos by Liz Barhydt of Life Made Sweet.